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African economic challenges identified

The fifth edition of the Africa CEO Forum has called upon African decision makers to rethink the African ‘business model’ to remain relevant in a changing and competitive environment.

Earlier this week, CEOs of the largest African and international companies together with political decision makers from over 40 African countries gathered in Geneva, Switzerland, to discuss economic issues facing the continent.

According to Global News Network Liberia, while delivering his keynote speech, Founder and President of the Forum, Amir Ben Yahmed, explained the urgency to overhaul Africa’s business model because of the declining growth in African economies.

“Even more alarming is the fact that the two biggest economies in Africa, Nigeria and South Africa, which produce 32% of the continent’s production, have been very badly affected,” Yahmed said.

The forum was established in 2012 and this year’s edition was organised in partnership with the African Development Bank (AfDB). Read more…

Africa CEO Forum launches new initiative

In conclusion of his speech, Yahmed announced the launch of the African CEO Barometer, an initiative aimed at measuring the confidence in African CEOs and the expectations and prospects of key leaders in the African private sector.

The Barometer is based on a survey of more than 1,000 active African CEOs across the continent and will be renewed annually. Read more…

Africa’s regulatory reforms

In a speech read on his behalf by AfDB Vice President in charge of the private sector, infrastructure and industrialisation Pierre Guislain, President Akinwumi Adesina remarked that in 2015, Africa accounted for over 30% of the business and regulatory reforms globally.

However, Adesina said foreign direct investment (FDI) flows are not following this trend.

“Excluding Caribbean financial centres, FDI to developing economies in 2015 increased by 9% to $765 billion from 2014. But Africa accounts for only 7% of total FDI in developing markets. Much needs to be done to massively attract FDI to Africa,” the AfDB President said in the speech.

He emphasised that Africa needs to address huge challenges around infrastructure, which he added “at the top of the list is electricity.”

According to Adesina, political will is what drove a country like Vietnam to achieve universal access to electricity in ten years.

“Since the launch by the Bank of the New Deal on Energy for Africa, we are beginning to see such a trend emerging in Africa. Political will is the currency of development,” he said.



Featured image: Transmedia Newswire

Babalwa Bungane
Babalwa Bungane is the content producer for ESI Africa - Clarion Events Africa. Babalwa has been writing for the publication for over five years. She also contributes to sister publications; Smart Energy International and Power Engineering International. Babalwa is a social media enthusiast.